I condemn the murder of 3 year-old Courtney Pieters from Elsies River, Cape Town in the strongest terms possible.
The child was reported missing earlier in the month, and tragically her concealed body was found last weekend near her home.
Western Cape Department of Social Development (DSD) social workers have been supporting the family, especially the mother throughout the ordeal. The team will provide trauma and bereavement counselling to the distraught mother.
We are appealing to members of the community with any information that can assist the South African Police Services (SAPS) in their investigation to please contact them on 086 001 0111, or the Elsies River SAPS on 021 933 0308.
As we mark International Day of Families today, I’m very concerned at the recent spate of child murders in the province. The common trait amongst the victims is that they happen to be girls, and the suspects in the cases have been people who were known and likely trusted by the victims.
It is tragic that the recent incidents of missing or abducted children, child abuse and murders reveal that for some of our children, life isn’t as care-free and safe as it should be.
DSD has a zero-tolerance approach to any form of harm and abuse of children, and the Children’s Act of 2005 enjoins us all to place the best interests of children first.
DSD will support the family during this difficult time, and render any support needed.
I continue to call on parents and communities to be extra vigilant of their children.